MOVIE REVIEW

Music Teacher: a melodrama

Fahmida Mehreen | Published: 00:00, Nov 24,2019

 
 
Fahmida Mehreen, Music Teacher, Shimla, Netflix Original, Amrita Bagchi, Manav Kaul, Sarthak Dasgupta, R D Burman, Lata Mangeshkar

Music Teacher (2019) is a Netflix original film by Sarthak Dasgupta. Being a not so high-budget box office movie, Music Teacher has done well for itself and the cast has done justice to the characters. Also, the filming location of the movie, in the spectacular mountains of Shimla, brings an extra allure to the story. You could almost feel the coolness of the breezy hills, writes Fahmida Mehreen

MUSIC Teacher, a Netflix original film by Sarthak Dasgupta, started streaming on Netflix from April 19, 2019. This story of an unrequited love and Indian romance has earned a rating of 6.5/10 on IMDb and a 4/5 on News18.com. However, for all the various reasons, my personal rating will be an 8 on a scale of 10. It is a romantic-drama genre movie which is suitable for audience above 16 years.

The movie encircles the story of an aspiring music enthusiast, Beni (Manav Kaul), coming from a family with a music background who led his life as a mediocre singer and a music teacher. He had been in search of fame and stardom all his life but without much success. After several failed attempts, he had to return from promising Mumbai to serene Shimla, his hometown.

Thereafter, he met Jyotsana (Amrita Bagchi) as one of his students. Their close encounters and psychological sync eventually led to building of a romantic relationship between the music teacher and his dedicated pupil.

Jyotsana got carried away by Beni’s personality more than his talent and started to dream of an eternal togetherness. Beni reciprocated her feelings. However, despite the deep and devoted love which they shared, circumstances caused them to path ways. And, thereon their roads never met, except once, towards the end.

The movie opens with the scene of Beni returning from Mumbai after finishing a stage show and coming home to find out that Jyotsana, now a superstar in Mumbai, was coming in town for a show.

His family members that include his strong-voiced mother, Madhavi (Neena Gupta) and open-minded sister, Urmi (Niharika Lyra Dutt), were not very optimistic about this whole matter because they, particularly his mother, could never really appreciate her success which she believed came at the cost of Beni’s unrecognised compromise and hard-work.

Beni convinced Jyotsana to take part in a music competition which eventually took her all the way to Mumbai and introduced her to the big world of stars from where she repelled to look back, till the day she decided to come to Simla, her old place, that too at the cost of a high payment which became quite controversial in the small town.

Initially, Beni refused to attend Jyotsana’s show being an egoist. But then, with time the ice started to melt.

The melodrama began when Beni initially proposed Jyotsana to take part in the competition and she refused out rightly. She showed strong disagreement to move to Mumbai, if given the chance. Nonetheless, fate had something else decided for her.

By luck and Beni’s earnest training, Jyotsana won the competition on local platform and was given the offer to go to Mumbai. She urged Beni not to allow her to go to Mumbai. Out of the sincere love she had for Beni, she did not want to leave him and move away. But Beni strongly convinced her to go and to start the ambitious career that she was capable of having and promised to come to her soon, carrying his part of achievement too.

Here, it is mentionable that Beni mishandled the situation because he could not stop self-pitying. Over the years, not much luck came for Beni and he failed to flourish in a way he thought he would, or rather everyone believed he would.  Meanwhile, Jyotsana moved high up the ladder, leaving no steps to come down.

With the news of Jyotsana coming back in town, Beni experienced an emotional ride. He reflected on his mistakes and regretted the missteps he took years ago which could not be undone. The audience experiences a screenplay of present day scenes mingled with flashbacks from the past which solidifies the series of events in the film.

The psychologically disturbed music teacher all of a sudden wanted to repent for estranging Jyotsana and wanted to get her back, but without a clue how. Adding a pinch of drama at this point, Jyotsana’s show was scheduled on the same day as Beni’s sister, Urmi’s, wedding day.

Restless Beni, not being able to control his boiling raw emotions for Jyotsana, seeing her posters here and there, her thoughts running through his head, he rushes to her show, leaving the rituals of his sister’s wedding. To make up for his loss, he was willing to risk it all this time.

Jyotsana, after eight years of separation, saw Beni for the first time during her performance while he stood between the curtains of the backstage. His eyes had so much to say. It was a pulsating moment. The song ‘Sambhayal Rakhiyan’ sung by Neeti Mohan as a playback singer was screened at this part of the movie.

Once the show was over, Beni and Jyotsana met at the makeup room, where there was a sensation of unsettlement, with each of them having so much to share. Beni articulated his guilt and remorse for his misdemeanour.

In reply, Jyotsana gently accepted the apology but in a very subtle manner conveyed that what was gone is gone forever, and it is too late to revert. On that note, with the heavy heart of a failed lover, Beni is seen going back to his sister’s wedding to finish what was left to be done.

In the middle of this main plot, laid a side-story where Beni got unexplainably involved with his neighbour Geeta (Divya Dutta). Geeta, being cheated on by her husband, returned to Simla with her old father-in-law.

She used to hear Beni’s enchanting singing at night. She shared with Beni that the isolating mountains around them will echo the words and cries of agony that one may vent out. Her lonesome life and Beni’s sentimental imbalance led to a lustrous entanglement of the two.

There are other characters in the movie that plays their part to bring the wholeness of the film. The character played by Neena Gupta as Beni’s mother was well acclaimed by the audience. Being a not so high-budget movie, Music Teacher has done well for itself and the cast has done justice to the characters. Also, the filming location of the movie, in the spectacular mountains of Shimla, brings an extra allure on top of the story.

Apart from all these, one of my personal favourite parts from this movie is the song ‘Rimjhim Gire Sawan’, a rendition of Lata Mangeshkar’s song from the movie Manzil, sung for Music Teacher by the melodious Shreya Ghoshal and Papon.

The screenplay of the song is also a delight to watch. Besides these two songs, there are other songs which have served its purpose in the film in the best possible way. I am totally overwhelmed by the music of the film; kudos to Rochak Kohli and the legendary R D Burman.

This is not the kind of movie that I would recommend you to watch with your friends in a hyped situation. Considering the nature of the film, you will enjoy the lacklustre yet captivating motion of the film once you, yourself, are coolheaded and have an appetite of watching something rather artistic.

The movie is available on Netflix. So on your next lazy day, you may choose to watch this movie and give yourself a treat from this pleasant drama with the vivid view of the Himalayas.

Fahmida Mehreen is a young aspiring writer.

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